Born in Chur in 1962, Boas Erez received his baccalaureate in science from Lugano High School in 1981, followed by his degree in Mathematics from the University of Geneva in 1985 and his PhD in Mathematics from the same university in 1987. He was Assistant Professor at the University of Geneva from 1985 to 1990 and Benjamin Peirce Assistant Professor at Harvard University from 1990 to 1993. From 1993, he was Full Professor of Mathematics at the University of Bordeaux, where he held several executive positions at institute, faculty, committee, programme, doctoral college and international scientific project levels. He has repeatedly served as a Board Member of the University of Bordeaux 1, of which he was Vice-President for the four-year period 2005-2008. He is author of numerous high-quality scientific publications, has regularly organised international congresses in his field of expertise and has extensive experience in coordinating university education projects through international partnerships.
Boas Erez was the first Rector of USI, holding office from 1 September 2016 to 9 May 2022. During his Rectorate, excellent results were achieved in the consolidation after the expansion phase of the first 20 years of USI's existence, with the increase in the unity of the academic centre in Italian-speaking Switzerland, with the establishment of a joint USI-EOC strategy for research in human medicine, with the affiliation of IRSOL and the Faculty of Theology with USI, and with the greater academic integration of the existing affiliated institutes. The strengthening of the service that the University offers to its local area is also important, which has led, for example, to the enhancement of the innovation and start-up hub, to all the opening activities in the local area that characterised USI's 25th birthday, to the creation of the new headquarters of the Archivio del Moderno and to the House of Sustainability project in Airolo. USI has also strengthened its internationalisation, with systematic efforts to develop partnership agreements in education and research. Prof. Erez has worked for the strengthening of academic and organisational structures, e.g. by proposing the establishment of Pro-Rectorates, and for increasing university democracy, e.g. by proposing the creation of the Academic Senate and the Student Corporation.